Of course your employees work for you. You hired them, you trained them, and you pay them. But are they actually “working” for your success or are they just reporting to the store on time and doing what’s necessary to get paid. There’s a big difference and it can be easily measured on your bottom line.

Over the years, I have employed more retail employees than I care to remember. I also turned over employees faster than I turned over my merchandise. When they were hired, we laid out their responsibilities, let’s call them A, B, and C and what they would be paid – X. It was carefully explained to them several times and if they accepted, they were trained and put on the floor.

Sadly, when they only did A, we brought them to the office and went back over the “deal” we had struck when they were hired – they would do A, B and C and be paid X. “Oh, yes”, they would reply and off they’d go to try again. Later, after they had done A and a small portion of B, they would come to us looking for a raise considering all of the extra work they were doing.

But still with all of that, there were a handful of employees that were totally committed to the store. They performed as if they were partners and the success of the store defined them. These rare gems are out there and you can find them. But when you do, you must nurture them and make sure they are appreciated. They will enable you to grow and prosper and must be rewarded by money and status as they go. They are worth every cent you pay them.

The others are a process of trial and error, mostly error. But your mentoring will be key in developing the gems. So, a good portion of how employees perform is on you. But keep in mind when you are in hiring and training mode that you can teach skills, but NOT attitude. I would take someone who knew nothing about anything but had a great, open attitude and wanted to learn and succeed over an experienced employee that thinks they know it all. If they actually knew it all, they wouldn’t be looking for a job.

As you grow your employees, you will grow your business. They are the face of your store. When they connect with your customers, the customers will happily buy and buy more. Then it is up to you to have the right merchandise on hand to facilitate their efforts. Great employees will help you and so can we. And we’re available and eager to hear from you.


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